Soaked the liners that I replaced today and the one that was where we were having the issue with smell and smushed poop turned the water quite dark after about an hour so soaked it again in clean water for another hour. Will do the same with the second set when I switch them.
I may have mentioned I used cotton diapers for my two kids when they were babies. In the old days, one could purchase the kind that had to be folded (thinner, so they washed more thoroughly) or a more thickly layered one that did not have to be folded. I used the thin ones which I thought washed more thoroughly and dried more quickly. Also, the newer machines use less water so it can be harder to clean thick items. The washer I used years ago, used tons of water (top loader).
Our washer is a top loader and I set the rinse level to high.
Will see if the soaking helps but that may be the issue, maybe it is too good and soaking up the pee that it takes a bit of a soak to get it to let it go again.
So far the liners have been great as far as keeping everyone dry and smooshed poop free.
Will maybe see about getting a few potty pads as well to see if that helps
Since stopping them from being able to sit and sleep in the pockets with their pee and poop (even though we spot clean 3-4 times a day and change them out for clean ones every 2-3 days) we have seen a noticeable improvement in Nala's breathing.
If it all works out we may cut the pockets of completely rather than turning them inside out so they are under the liner and not accessible
Just adding the info here in case it helps anyone out in future.
- Sewing for a Cause
The type of fleece on what you are using isn't helping either with the issues.
Since we stopped using the pockets they seem to be doing much better. Particularly Nala who was the one who was having breathing issues. She is back to her old self, racing around during floor time, although still on medication for now (Chloramphenicol and Lasix), but she has put on 50g in the last week and almost 100g since she got back from the vet on Sept 7th.
She had been for an X-ray but there was so much liquid in her chest area the vet said they weren't able to see her heart or much else in that area. Now she appears to be much better they are suggesting another X-Ray to see if they can see anything now.
The Ammonia smell was only really strong that one time and I think it was because all 3 of them were sleeping in the same pocket at the same time and peeing in there, however having them sleep in a fleece pocket with no fresh air flow along with their pee and poop in hindsight really doesn't seem to be a particularly good idea, despite what the manufacturers website says.
Now they dont have the pockets or any other enclosed spaces except the fleece forests they all seem to be doing well. I will probably be looking at other fleece options at some point plus more potty pads.
- Supporter in 2018
They also talked about "Do your part to prevent the most common guinea pig diseases, like bumblefoot, URI’s, and urinary infections. Our liners are anti-bacterial and dust-free. Unlike U-Haul furniture pads, each layer was specially chosen to absorb and protect."
"Moisture and mess wick through the fleece layer into absorbent bamboo fiber. The waterproof bottom means pee stays put, so owners can relax!"
And the real kicker
"Use the money saved from vet bills and disposable bedding costs to make your guinea pigs happy!"
The reality in our experience was somewhat different. The Pockets look cute but our problems came from the fact that they were spending so much time in them and peeing and pooping in there and sleeping in there with no air circulation seems to be, if not the cause, then at least heavily contributing to, the ongoing respiratory related issues our 3 girls have been having over the last 5-6 months.
All the pictures I see posted on their website and social media seem to show their fleeces clean and pristine as if they just came out of the packet/wash
They are still an improvement on having to deal with paper bedding and easier to spot clean but we had to have two sets that needed to be switched out and washed every 2-3 days so there is still quite a bit of work there.
I'm sorry your piggies had problems. : (
Since we stopped using the pockets the girls seem to be doing well, we did have a little bit of a worry with Chunkita making an odd noise at one point (sounding like a regular pig) but that went away of its own accord.
I did the weekly weighing yesterday and Nala (who had been really ill lately and who was on Antibiotics and Lasix, she had been down at 752g at the start of Sept when the vet was talking about possibly having to euthanize her ) was up to 944g so I am very relieved to see her putting on weight , Suzi had put on a little bit of weight at 746g and Chunkita is living up to her nickname at 1,105g.
So at the moment, touch wood, they all seem happy and healthy.